Effectiveness of coaching as a teacher professional development strategy in low-income countries

Abstract

 Presenter (s) Isaac Msukwa and Tobi Mbaya, Creative Associates; Zulfiqar Ali, Irfan Majeed, and Hira Siddiqui, International Rescue Committee; Jovina Tibenda and Buretta Buretta, RTI International; Teshome Begna, Creative Associaties Panel 2: Silvia Ferrans Diazgranados, Jeongmin Lee, and Yilkal Chalachew, International Rescue Committee; Wael Moussa and Annie Smiley, fhi360 Martha Myava, RTI International

Education projects around the world are grappling with the notion of how to change instructional practice among teachers in a way that leads to improved student outcomes. Research points to the use of coaching either alone or in tandem with face-to-face training as an effective way to change teacher practice and improve student outcomes (Cilliers, Fleisch, Prinsloo, & Taylor, 2019; Janeli Kotze, Stephen Taylor, & Brahm Fleisch, 2018; Piper & Zuilkowski, 2015; Wested, 2019). As coaching becomes more widespread as a viable means of professional development, many different models now exist in a variety of contexts. Coaching may support early learning in formal schools and learning in non-formal settings. In addition, the role of a coach can be performed by different actors: school-based actors such as head teachers or other experienced teacher; government officials external to the school such as district education officers; and contractors. Some coaches make use of technology such as tablets and videos in their practice and others do not.

We propose two panels that bring together papers that explore efforts by to implement effective coaching programs in different settings and contexts. Each panel will begin with a brief introduction from the chair, followed by four presentations. A discussant will provide a 10-minute reflection following the presentations. The final 20 minutes will be reserved for questions from the audience.

The two-part panel covers experiences in Northeastern Nigeria, Tanzania, Malawi, Pakistan, Ethiopia, and Afghanistan. They also cover a variety of teacher professional development models from video-based coaching to school-based coaching to professional learning communities. The research topics are also wide-ranging: cost-effectiveness of coaching, the impact of coaching on student outcomes, and experiences of implementing coaching at scale using local systems. Finally, they also cover a variety of research designs including qualitative studies, randomized control experiments, and mixed-method studies.

These panels will be of interest to researchers and practitioners focused on improving teacher practice in the developing world and will provide a forum for learning related to coaching effectiveness in different contexts.

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